As the human rights center Viasna has found out, a young activist Zmitser Dashkevich is treated for osteochondrosis in republican prison hospital in Minsk. He is injected Vitamin B12. The leader of the “Young Front” does not know for how long he is to stay in prison hospital. However, he says that all sick prisoners dream to return from the prison hospital, as conditions are very harsh there.
Since April 28 Paval Mazhejka, Hrodna-based journalist, is to vacate the position of a press-secretary of the Political council of the united democratic forces of Belarus Alyaksandr Milinkevich. Paval Mazhejka became Milinkevich’ press-secretary in autumn 2005 when the politician was elected a single democratic candidate for presidency in Belarus.
In her complaint to Minsk city court Valiantsina Sviatskaya asked to cancel the decision of Frunzenski district court of Minsk which had ruled not to charge general Yury Sivakou. Sviatskaya also asked for moral and material compensation from “Honar”, Belarusian Association of veterans of Special Departments of the Ministry of Internal Affairs.
Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs David Kramer has stated a necessity for by Belarusian authorities to make a number of steps aimed at democratization of the situation in the country. Otherwise, David Kramer said, relations between Belarus and the US are “to deteriorate considerably”. “My message [to the Belarusian authorities] has been very clear, which is that the government here can take one of two paths. They can lead to an improvement in relations between Belarus and the United States by taking specific concrete steps. Specifically, releasing all political prisoners, and I mean all political prisoners, and dropping charges against others, including from Young Front; and allow events tomorrow to take place peacefully, and allow regional and national Congresses [of democratic forces] to be held in Belarus without any problems. In absence of those steps I fear that relations could deteriorate. Under Belarus Democracy Reauthorization Act Congress passed and President Bush signed, we have additional steps we can take to increase the pressure upon the government. I hope they won’t be necessary. But the ball is in the court of the government of Belarus,” stated David Kramer at a press-conference in Minsk.
The organizing committee of the Chernobyl Way held the press conference at which the information about the latest negotiations with the capital authorities on conducting the procession 26 April was presented. It was stressed that the action applicants would come 26 April to Yakub Kolas Square for accompanying the people to the allowed place of gathering.“We shall come to Yakub Kolas Square for helping people to get to the allowed place of gathering”, deputy chairman of the BNF Party Alyaksei Yanukevich announced.
The standing commission on international affairs and relations with the C.I.S of the “house of representatives” intends to recommend the agreement on legal assistance in civil and criminal lawsuits between Belarus and Iran for ratification. The decision was made today at the sitting of the commission. The “deputies” are to consider the document at the session 4 May.
The department of culture of the Minsk executive committee advised organizers of the “Krama” group concert to turn to the higher instance – to the ministry of culture or to ideological department of the President’s Administration for getting the permission for the concert. That was reported to the BelaPAN by concert organizer Pavel Kashirin.
On April 24th, human rights defender Ales Bialiatski was elected Vice-President of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH). FIDH is one of the most influential world human rights organizations. The central office of FIDH is based in Paris. FIDH has a status of an observer in the United Nations, and has a possibility to speak at the sessions of UN bodies.
24 April chairman of the United Civil Party Anatol Lyabedzka and chairman of the Party of Communists Belarusian Syargei Kalyakin attended the districts of the Gomel region that mostly suffered from the Chernobyl disaster.
Salihorsk youth has received a positive answer from a bas depot No.1 to their proposal to announce bus stops in Belarusian. It the letter it is said that the bus depot introduces a practice of making announcements in Belarusian. Information is provided in Belarusian at the bus station “Salihorsk”. Changes will be made in informational signs later.
Belarus has agreed for opening a represe4ntation of the European Commission in Minsk. The BelaPAN has been informed about that in the office of Benita Ferrero-Waldner, European Commissioner for External Relations and European Neighbourhood Policy.